Sprint changes 1

We just got our hands of a copy of the latest Sprint Playbook, and while we were hoping for some more info about the LG Marquee and Kyocera Milano, what we found was a bit, well, different.  It seems that in order to stay competitive with Verizon and AT&T (Sprint's words, not ours), some changes are going to be made to several of the perks everyone on Sprint takes for granted. 

For starters, the Sprint Premier program is coming to an end.  Current members will be hearing from Sprint sometime after Sept. 16 with all the details, but the short version is starting at the beginning of this month, enrollment in the program stopped, and you'll have to use your current (and final) Premier upgrade on or before Dec. 31, 2012.  In addition, the other smaller but just as appreciated perks like accessory discounts and annual anniversary gifts end Dec. 31, 2011.  Employees have been instructed how to let everyone down easy, but this will sting no matter how you slice it.

Next up, is a major change to Sprint's 30-day=satisfaction guarantee -- it's getting cut by 16 days.  Like we've seen other carriers do, Sprint will now be switching to a 14-day return policy.  They will still return everything but the restocking fee, you just have a couple weeks less to make up your mind. 

Finally, starting Oct. 2, the "New For You" upgrade time is changing from 22 months, down to 20.  Cutting the time down by two months is nice, but will hardly take the sting of losing the yearly Premier benefit away.

Nothing good can last forever folks, and as Sprint reminds us, they have to do something to stay competitive.  In the end, it's a business and sometimes you have to rob from Peter to pay Paul.  We have some relevant pages of the Playbook after the break.

Thanks, Anon!

Sprint changes 2

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Sprint changes 5

 
There are 236 comments

Demodocus says:

Would it not be more competitive to continue offering the premier program, giving customers another incentive to choose Sprint? =\

My sentiments exactly

Mine too. Now, if they make changes to their "everything" plans, they'll no longer be "competitive" with the others. Too bad. They had a good thing goin'.

Let's PRAY that they don't touch their everything plans...otherwise it might be time to teach them a lesson by going the pre-paid route (even if it's ironically on its own network with Virgin Mobile or Boost Mobile).

benthe1 says:

Man. That sucks for those loyal customers who have been with Sprint 10 years or more. Then again, the amount you save on your monthly bill from being with Sprint kind of justifies staying with them, for me at least. And for those threatening to go to ATT, Verizon, or T-mobile, good luck with that...rofl.

On a lighter note, at least I get an upgrade every 20 months instead of 22 months. And the accessory perks...never used them. EBay is where its at. All in all I see these changes as a good thing for both the consumer and Sprint. As long as the monthly prices stay where they are then I'll be okay.

Landon1983 says:

Ok so after talking to a rep online they said that I wouldn't lose my Gold since I have been with them since 2002. I will probably ask some other reps to confirm what he said and I guess we'll see what happens down the road but maybe it's only those Gold customers on the plans that qualify them. Maybe if you've been with them 10+ years they'll still allow "Gold" upgrades?

According to the Sprint website, which the slides are shown under this article, Gold Premier Customers will maintain their Gold status. According to the changes the Gold will remain in place, the catch is that the upgrades are excluded form the program. Under the Gold Program they still provide some benefits that are not significant to me, I would venture to say that these benefits are not attractive to most customers. Bottom line is that even as a Gold costumer we will loose the yearly upgrades.

Landon1983 says:

Buckfutter!

Landon1983 says:

Hmm even looking at the slides it doesn't mention that Gold will stay around after 12/2012, but the rep said it would and not to worry since I've been with them since 2002. I don't doubt you though on the upgrade thing wouldn't surprise me one bit.

keith2k1 says:

Being loyal means nothing these days. And those Sprint prices will go up...they got to pay for NASCAR some way...

jogutier says:

we are now taking apps at verizon. Lol man, it was nice having a cdma competitor while it lasted. I give Sprint less than 2, yes 2 years.

Landon1983 says:

Seriously, and Verizon's signal is better here in San Antonio. You would think being a major metropolitan area and always one of the first markets to get WiMax, LTE etc their WiMax coverage would be better. Eh...spotty at best just like their 3G. Verizon is definitely looking good right now.

tom299 says:

@demodocus: I think you're mistaking corporate marketing spin for actual good intentions. The goal of the corporation is to increase profit, and this allows them to do exactly that. Cutting the Premier program makes them more money.

Who? says:

I'd like that to be the case, but the end of the article indicates that Android Central believes Sprint's BS:

"Nothing good can last forever folks, and as Sprint reminds us, they have to do something to stay competitive. In the end, it's a business and sometimes you have to rob from Peter to pay Paul."

How very disappointing. What ever happened to journalism? Better yet, what happened to independent thought?

That's a bit uncalled for, don't you think?

Sprint is dying. They haven't expanded their network footprint in almost a year, lost a huge favorable roaming contract, and have spent all their time and money trying to block the AT&T-Mobile deal so they can ensure that T-Mobile goes bankrupt and not them.

At this point, they have three choices:
1. Kill the data plans, which is the only real reason they get ANY new subscribers.

2. Raise rates to the level of the two competitors.

3. Kill customer loyalty plans that drain their bank account, and clearly aren't drawing new customers.

Anyone who thinks Sprint (or any carrier) cares about anything other than the bottom line is a fool. Besides, if they run themselves out of business, they can't offer you a damn thing.

Now you may not agree with my analysis. You don't have to. But don't insinuate that I didn't write what I think.

Thank you.

Who? says:

You know how you stay competitive over the long term? You sacrifice short term profits for long term profitability. You keep the plans as they are, take out a big loan at historically low interest rates and in a buyer's market for labor, and build out your network asap. Then you have the network and the plans, and you take over.

What am I missing?

benthe1 says:

That sounds familiar. Oh yeah, that's why Sprint has so much debt...don't be a fool.

tronthedon says:

If only running a business was that easy.

coolqf says:

That's what they've been doing since Sprint wireless was created. You know the saying.... If it's broke, fix it.

RUSH says:

My sentiments exactly. Some people will never appreciate anything - even if it's freely given to them. Whoever doesn't like Sprint's new policy, can always go to another carrier. Their company - their decision - you don't like - then oh well. It's just that simple.

Coop1979 says:

I do think it's a bit of a stretch to say that Sprint is "dying". Why dump more money into expanding WiMax coverage when they know they won't be using it in 5 years?

All of these changes are in preparation of the iPhone launch on Sprint. The (hopefully) massive influx of new customers means that they can cut these programs and make more profit.

I love my yearly upgrades as a Gold member, but I know many "normal" people who have the option to upgrade yearly and don't. They won't miss any of these programs that Sprint is cutting, but they would certainly notice if their monthly rates went up.

"I know many 'normal' people who have the option to upgrade yearly and don't. They won't miss any of these programs that Sprint is cutting, but they would certainly notice if their monthly rates went up."

I had that option for 2 years, and only took advantage of it recently because my Palm Pre (bought off contract) was beginning to crap out. With my usual purchase pattern, I won't be getting a new phone for at least 20 months...longer if the phone continues to work just fine. If they raised my rates (beyond the $10 Premium Data tax), not only would I notice, but i'd have to give the competition some serious consideration.

tronthedon says:

I think your headline is wrong (at the end). There is one policy that's impossible not to like: The 22 months to 20 decrease.

It shouldn't be treated as a negative that can't be liked just because it's a "on the bright side" kind of thing.

Donmeister85 says:

^^^^^^^ WIN

keith2k1 says:

Very well put.

Dark_Blu says:

Hmmm... The HIVE MIND is what happened to "Independent thought".

tastethelink says:

What a bunch of spoiled brats we are. We want new phones every time they come out, and don't want to pay more than $200 for them. We don't buy accessories from the company (where they make alot of their subsidies back from the discount on phones) opting instead to go to a mall or online. We don't want higher plans, because we feel that having constant access to the internet with a device that can do everything except cook us dinner and fly us across the world should be as cheap as our Netflix subscription.

So the company takes away one year upgrades, because most people didn't use them, and the ones that did wouldn't buy any accessories to go with them. Thus, it was costing the company money. The company could have raised the plans instead, but then people would turn into rabies-infected apes and call for execution. The company could've lowered the amount they're willing to subsidize, but NOBODY loves their EVO enough to pay an extra hundred for it.

And instead of blaming ourselves, we blame the iPhone, which we view as an inferior phone, yet is also the cause of all of our problems (its what made us jobless, took our kids away, burned our house down, because PHONES CAN DO THAT.) So an inanimate object takes our blame and we threaten leaving to other companies that already have that object, but that we would never buy tthat object, even if the other company has no android device near its capability.

All the while, the salespeople at the company will be yelled at, threatened, and possibly fired, because they can't get someone to buy a damn case for their phone, and have no control over when you can upgrade.

All for a damned phone.

cfbauer says:

I have bad news for you: every businesses' goal is to increase profits. The ones who don't have that goal are called nonprofits.

It's more competitive because the changes allow them to start carrying the iPhone (so that they can compete with AT&T & VZW). I don't believe in coincidences ... VZW made similar changes to several of their programs just before they gained the iPhone. Seems pretty clear it's Apple contractual requirements with the carriers.

lldsandsll says:

Interesting theory. That is a plausible scenario, but what does Apple have to lose if Sprint is subsidizing phones? The old 12 month upgrade would only increase sales. Now I have to wait much longer should I decide I want an iPhone since I got an Evo3d. By that time there will be so many more devices competing.

nikkisharif says:

Actually you still have until the end of 2012 to use your final yearly upgrade if you decide you want to get the iPhone.

Dark_Blu says:

Saw this, texted "Upgrade" to Sprint. Got back this message:

"12/1/11 SAVE $150 w/2 yr $75 w /1yr"

Someone just not updated this in the Sprint system yet or what?

dquinn80 says:

I'm in that same boat my friend, guess I am truly stuck with my Evo3d now :-/

atg284 says:

stuck? EVO 3D is better than any icrap out there.

Mike_is_Mike says:

Stuck. :D

A few weeks ago you all were RAVING about the EVO 3D.....NOW you're "stuck" with it. LOL

moises1204 says:

Nope, that would make too much sense.

Mike_is_Mike says:

You're interpreting "more competitive" as a consumer, when a company says "more competitive" they mean less waste/loss and more revenue….what they really mean is "more in line with the competition".

It's time to take off your rose colored classes.

coolqf says:

From a marketing standpoint, yes, but from a financial, I doubt it. By us, the consumer, being able to buy annually a phone at at least a $350 discount it means that Sprint has to cover this cost. That's roughly $30 a month. Verizon and ATT, on the other hand, have this cost closer to $20 a month because new phones are eligible for the discount closer to every 2yrs. With Sprint already offering the most competitive smartphone plans, this new-phone structure makes it extremely difficult to turn a profit.

lldsandsll says:

Well that's complete garbage.

Wow, and the premier program that Sprint had was one of the bigger advantages over the other carriers. Well I guess I'm gonna spend my last (and first because I never knew I was a gold member until recently! >:[ ) on the Epic 4G Touch.

Mike_is_Mike says:

Looks like Sprints plan is working like a charm!

JDGAFFLIN says:

I understand their goal is to turn a profit, but is cutting the perks that actually set them apart the way to do it?

Or are they banking on the iPhone being that much of a draw?

RETG says:

And in a few months, they will start tier pricing; just like the other two.

Don't think so. Look at your contract (if you signed one lately). There's now a clause in there that allows them to throttle bandwidth at any time if they think it's in their best interests.

They will do like T-Mobile did, and cut back the standard plan once you reach a soft cap. Hopefully, there will be a way to "grandfather" around it like you can with T-Mo's old Android data plan.

Still better than tiered data packages IMO.

hankwatt says:

Could you tell me where you saw this? Thanks, love the site

"Sprint reserves the right, without notice or limitation, to limit data throughput speeds"

http://shop2.sprint.com/en/legal/legal_terms_privacy_popup.shtml

Paragraph 6

hoosiercub says:

I think Sprint will go to tiered packages. That throttling plan TMo has is simple because they have a 2G/Edge network to fall back on. I don't think Sprint will throw heavy/overusers back on 1X, at least I'd hope not. I'm pretty certain tiered packages are in Sprint's future.

RickNY says:

Excllent.. Im sure elimination of unlimited data is next, in order to put Sprint in a "better competitive position with Verizon and AT&T"

bkj216 says:

Its inevitable. If Sprint was smart, instead of 2gb caps, they'd do something like bold like 10gb caps.

I'd be ok with a 5gb cap.

S_C_B says:

I've always thought the same thing.

lldsandsll says:

Classic oligopoly behavior in action. Perhaps the t-mo att merger would have been a good thing for us sprint users.

tanderson says:

Why are you using the past tense for a future event?

Maybe he's assuming that the DOJ's suit to block the sale has been or will be successful....

Yup, and sooner than you think. I give em til Q2 next year, at most

bkj216 says:

Wow Sprint really wants me to go back to Verizon huh?

mhmmdy123 says:

I`ll go to Metro PC from Sprint, if they`ll jack the price up.

Dark_Blu says:

Sprint wants me to Keep my EVO 4G until December 2012 When Verizon will have a World phone with a side Sliding Keyboard and LTE. Ok. Your loss, Sprint. "UNLIMITED MYSELF"?? Yea. Right.

irock1985 says:

Well that's just effing great! I really hope this isn't all stemming from that dang iPhone! Seriously! The iPhone is the mark of the beast!

It's ALL from the i*hone. Apple's contractual requirements. VZW did the exact same thing 8 months ago before it launched their version.

EggoEspada says:

Oh. Hai there iPhone. Taking another carrier and their awesome perks I see.

anthonok says:

DEFINITELY the fault of the iPhone.

YBCold says:

I can help but feel like someone raped me of my status. First I was a gold member, then down graded to a silver and now it is being taken away all together!

What a load of crap! I have always stuck by Sprint and boasted them up over ATT and Verizon, but no more!

Dan Hessy, if your listening, you are making a big mistake and are going to loose a lot of customers! Iphone or not!

Then vote with your wallet - don't buy Apple products and tell everyone you know to do the same.

Are you planning to leave Sprint for the competition only to pay more while getting less?? Yeah, Sprint's moves are going to leave us feeling sore for a while...but as long as their current plans stay where they are, there's no reason for a mass exodus (especially to run to a carrier that will treat you worse).

Rob White says:

Every where the iphone goes carrier perks & benefits go away. I guess this makes it official for Sprint.

McParty says:

So let me get this right...to remain competitive you do what the other guys do so there is no longer an advantage to sign with you...since the larger guys have better coverage. Hmmm sounds like a plan! LOL

freddyc says:

That's JUST what I was thinking. How are you "remaining competitive" by looking like everyone else?

They remain "competitive" by not bleeding so much money from the perks they are eliminating or changing, therefore allowing them to keep their current rates.

The more money Sprint loses, they less they can actively compete...and that includes bringing in desirable phones. Everyone's harping on the iPhone effect, but the iphone is not the only big phone possibly coming to the line-up. You've got Mango phones coming soon, as well as the Nexus Prime and other Ice Cream Sandwhich goodies.

Sprint wants to fully recoup their subsidies within your current 2 year contract, instead of your 2 year extension if you upgraded every year.

As much as this sucks (and YES, I think it sucks), we should be thankfull that we're not getting another rate increase (that $10 Premium Data charge is still leaving a bad taste in people's mouths).

lennyj17 says:

Yes because that competitive advantage is offering the iPhone like Verizon and AT&T....its the iPhone effect FOLKS!

Dark_Blu says:

Great, which means that getting the iPhone this year after 12/11/11/ isn't going to get me a discount. I'm not paying $600 for ANY PHONE!!

rizzay1 says:

What the hell Sprint? The premier program is a big deal for Sprint customers and now we are more like any other carrier -____-

lennyj17 says:

This is Def the iPhone effect.....Verizon literally went down the same path of axing loyalty programs just before the iPhone released there....

dquinn80 says:

I can 200% agree with you, I was an employee at VZW before, during, and slightly after the iPhone intro, and it was a sad day at every VZW call center during that process.

Flowmastr1x says:

It's going to get to the point that people will use a mifi when away from a normal wifi and use apps like Line2 on there android or iOS

Spork1673 says:

just another reason im glad i jumped ship when i did the early upgrade was the ONLY thing really setting them apart from the other 2 .. sure "unlimited" data was nice when i could use it ... about 5% of the time .. i agree this looks like a fall out of the iphone coming to sprint ..

"the early upgrade was the ONLY thing really setting them apart from the other 2"

Excluding the Unlimited data, there are a few more things that separates Sprint from the other 2:

1)GPS service is included in their plans. The "other 2" charge $10 for that service. Having that available has kept me from buying a standalone GPS unit. If I remember correctly, Google has turn by turn map services for Android phones, but I believe this is gimped on Verizon phones in order to force you to pay for VZNavigator (if i'm worng, I wouldn't mind someone correcting me).

2)Everything Data and Up includes Unlimited Texting/MMS, the "other 2" make you choose from a several packages, with Unlimired Text/MMS topping out at $20 a month.

3)Everything Data and Up includes Nights and Weekends starting at 7pm (Ending at 7am Monday morning. The other two start at 9pm (ending at 6am Monday morning). This may not be a big deal to many, but to those who talk a lot on their phones, it's nice not to have to wait so late in the night to conseve miniutes.

4)Unlimited Any Mobile to Any Mobile for Everything Data and Up plans. So you only use your minutes calling or recieving calls from Land Lines (I figure international calls would use your anytime minutes too, but i'm not sure what the rate is when you're recieving an international call). AT&T says Mobile to Mobile, but if you look at their plans you can read this little line right here: "Unlimited calling to other AT&T wireless customers with Mobile to Mobile while in the U.S." With Sprint, it's with ANY mobile phone (within the US and territories I presume).

I'd say that's SEVERAL things setting them apart from the "other 2".

Who? says:

This is so ridiculous. Sprint laments the high prices and anti-competitive nature of the market if the ATTmobile merger goes through, while at the same time raises rates and fees and eliminates programs that customers love.

What difference would it make to Sprint if the merger went through? If prices went up, Sprint would just raise its prices.

Why would anyone go to Sprint over any other carrier at this point? I'm glad I left when they first changed their premier program and took away the upgrade that I had accrued. Luckily they waived my ETF, but it took about an hour and a half on the phone with them to do it.

They don't care about "competition",they want T-Mobile themselves.

dchawk81 says:

Well they still have unlimited data and lowest price. Once those go away they're definitely screwing themselves. Especially if they grandfather people in but nail them on their next upgrade.

Who? says:

Their prices are not significantly (and if you have a .edu discount, barely) cheaper and plenty of people currently on Verizon and AT&T are grandfathered in to unlimited data on those networks. I see no reason why anyone with unlimited data on ATT or Verizon should leave for Sprint anymore.

New customers aren't going to join Sprint in any meaningful amount. Sprint is therefore milking its current customers as much as they think they can. They think they won't leave because there's no unlimited data anywhere else, so they're stuck. Best of luck to them, I suppose.

dchawk81 says:

I was thinking along the lines of keeping people. I doubt many people are going to switch to Sprint from whoever, but Sprint will still keep a lot of customers as long as they're cheaper and unlimited. Those two really have to stay together though because cheaper alone won't cut it any more than unlimited alone won't cut it.

I'm not going anywhere as long as I don't get my bill raised & capped (I actually use my phone's data a LOT and a cap would change my life/workstyle entirely). If they cap me and my rates are the same as Verizon, I'll go to Verizon because they're faster.

beargold23 says:

This really sucks, my contract is up with VZW in November and i was seriously thinking of switching...mmmmmm

Who? says:

Why? You're grandfathered in to unlimited data on Verizon. I too am on Verizon (left Sprint at the end of March) and have thought about moving back to Sprint because of the Premier program. But not anymore; there's simply no benefit and I'd never get unlimited data on Verizon ever again.

beargold23 says:

To be honest i was thinking about the Unlimited everything for 99 bucks plus my 20% discount, VZW cant match this plus the lineup of phones have is great, not all 4.3" phones lol, and i know about droid 3. With the news today im prolly just gonna re-up with VWZ.

turbofan says:

Unless something has changed since i stopped working for sprint at the end of 2009, the employee discount didnt apply to the simply everything plans.

crxssi says:

I have been using an employee discount (non-Sprint employee, this is a "corporate account discount thing") of 20% for years. I am not aware of that having ever gone away.

Tiered Data....It's coming next and everyone knows it.

Draiko#AC says:

My only hope is the fact that Sprint has vast amounts of spectrum will keep unlimited data going for quite a while.

Hey whiners, they still have unlimited data...So if their decision was to take away unlimited data and keep the premiere program, you guys would be bitching about that even more...They obviously had to do something. theres just no pleasing some people...

Who? says:

Hey whiner about whiners,

Most people on AT&T and Verizon have unlimited data because they were grandfathered in. Do you think they're going to leave for Sprint after Sprint's seemingly endless anti-consumer changes?

They haven't done "endless anti-consumer changes"! They made a minor change that most people probably wont even notice....Unlike losing unlimited data which almost everyone would notice. And everybody freaking out thinking its the iphone's fault, guess what? its still a rumor.....So get some solid facts before you start complaining.

Oh it's no rumor. It's a done deal. Anyone who says different is either in denial, or a moron.

turbofan says:

While I am a huge proponent of unlimited data, its hardly a change that everyone would notice. Most of the posters here on AC would notice, but of the 5 phones on my account only two would notice the rremoval of data caps and thats because of illicit tethering.

EvoJumper says:

Unlimited will go next. Then you'll be bitching as well.

Orion78 says:

And this is why I didn't want the damn icrap to come to Sprint. That freakin phone is a curse. I hate when carriers bend down and take it up their you know where for this evil empire. Whatever, I'm going to enjoy my phone regardless.

Looks like Premier Gold will get one more upgrade after purchasing a new phone before the end of the year or am I reading that wrong?

Also, I wouldn't mind losing unlimited data if Sprint adds free tethering, pooled data across multiple devices and of course competitive data rates. Maybe just a straight $10 per gb fee.

jlo8720 says:

I'm wondering this too. I have my upgrade now, Should I use it on the evo3D? even though I rooted my 4g and ported the sense upgrades to the evo.

if I use my upgrade before they officially announce, I hope that would mean I could still have an upgrade in 12 more months, and then use it again before the final EOL date of Dec 12.

can anyone else clarify or confirm

kkff_03 says:

I agree I was thinking the same thing I am considering getting a photon for. Now then upgrading again next year.

Yep, unlimited data is next and that's the only reason I stayed with sprint.

bingo!

hopefulfarm says:

Sprint doesn't have the 4G coverage that Verizon has, their only plusses for me was their good plan prices and the premier program. That going away is actually making me consider switching to Verizon, if all things become equal except 4G. Sorry sprint, this is going to cost you customers because you're losing in the 4G market.

I guess 14 years of loyalty means nothing. Sprint is quickly removing all of the reasons to stay with them. No 4g in my city and slow 3g. Verizon has 4g in my city and it is fast. The next thing Sprint will do is remove my discount and I will be gone for sure. I also heard that Sprint might only get the iPhone 4 too. They are pretty presumptuous to think they won't lose customers from this. Verizon will be laughing all the way to the bank.

dfine1966 says:

I have been with Sprint for almost 13 years, and I am really upset about losing my perks. I always loved getting a new phone every year. So I guess, being a Sprint customer for a long time will now mean nothing. What good is it to be the first to buy, when you might not be eligible for another year.

I guess they say this is so they can keep the unlimited plans. If they do get rid of the unlimited plans, then Sprint would of lied to everyone, saying that all these cuts are so they can compete and still give unlimited plans.

Now, I feel like I am not special anymore. Thanks Sprint for ruining my day.

ajcook says:

Why?

Why are the perks so important?

I'm an 11-year Sprint customer. I'm losing my 12-month upgrade, just like you. None of the other perks are important to me (I don't care about "free" plan review, annual "thank you", first purchase rights, etc.). I have a family plan with 5 lines. Only my master line was eligible for the 12-month upgrade. So, that only affects 20% of the phones on my account. For my wife and kids, it's no change (well, it's an improvement of an upgrade 2 months sooner).

What I care about is the unlimited plans that are competitively priced (at least, in my area). The price for that plan, and the number of things that are unlimited (text AND mms AND data AND mobile-to-any-mobile) is unmatched by any other carrier that I'm aware of.

That affects my bottom line, and makes me happy way more than an annual upgrade. Heck, I just recently upgraded because I could, not because I was unhappy with the previous phone. Truth be told, I'd have been happy to live with the previous phone another year.

Other than the fact that people like to complain, and that nobody (myself included) likes having things taken away, I frankly don't understand the heat in the fire that this announcement has caused. This is not that substantial of a change.

I don't understand all the wailing and gnashing of teeth, all the predictions of Sprint's doom and gloom.

Not just you, a lot of posters here today.

I'm not naive. But, I don't feel all that bent out of shape over this.

Dre89 says:

Wow, that all sucked. So basically the only thing Sprint has now is unlimited data, and we all know that's next. So I'll be switching to VZW come contract time I think.

On the plus side I assume current Sprint customers will be grandfathered in with their unlimited data like AT&T and VZW members are.

heclaboy82 says:

So does that mean 10 year plus sprint members can't do yearly upgrades, that's sucks.

harold42483 says:

wtf sprint first you downgrade me from being a premiere customer getting a phone every year to absilver who gets one every 22monthsband nownyou are just getting rid of it like that. And I make 10 years next January so I would have been gold member. You guys suck.

jescobe82 says:

Apple now ruining our Sprint parade. ALL carriers now suck. I am going to give up a cell phone entirely. Pretty bad when my family plan surpasses my car payment. I'm done with all this. Who REALLY needs a phone? We all managed without them before. It can be done again. Take that for your competitive edge.......

Tonio21 says:

Or just go with prepaid phones if someone HAS to have a cell phone.

People still have the choice of a Feature phone with phone/texting plan, and just call it a day...or as you stated, go Pre-paid.

There are now some decent (if not great) Android options for Pre-paid carriers. Yeah, you'll pay upfront for the higher end phones, but you'll save monthly on your plan.

crxssi says:

Well, so much for my Gold Premiere membership as a reward for *12 years* on Sprint.

I guess I am now no more important to them than some first time buying teenager :(

And still no 4G in my 1.5+ million people area. Not happy.

kurioskurion says:

Ahem... Not surprised.

Bmwillz says:

When are consumers going to realize that if you want change you have to hit companies where it hurts, the wallet.
Any and everything starts and ends with you.
If you don't like it leave or threaten to leave.
These corporations have brain washed you to believe that you need them and /or their competition.... Look at the star wars geeks protesting a scene from the new package release. Numbers make change happen

Bmwillz says:

Did you know that rival companies still have agreements between each other like not low balling each other with prices or hiring tactics and we being stupid are choosing sides when in reality they play for the same team. Attack of the Money Snatchers

dchawk81 says:

facebook.com/sprint

Say it where it matters, people.

lol you think that will change their minds?

Bmwillz says:

If people were smart and decided to collectively protest and threaten, yes. But millions only know how to complain about a hundred actually take action.

Bmwillz says:

Actually going back and forth now with someone who is defending sprint on their facebook page.

nikkisharif says:

Even though this perk will be gone, I'm still happy with my Sprint service. I get unlimited everything for a pretty good price & 4G has been in my area since inception & it works great!! Its business...It is what it is!!

FYI: the only way Sprint would downgrade someone from Gold to Silver would be if your account wasn't in good standing for a any length of time...its listed in the fine print! Even 1 day late on your bill could mess up your reputation.

dfine1966 says:

What everyone means is that when Sprint split from Premier upgrade to make Gold or Silver. You had to have a plan higher than 169.99(shared plan) $99(single plan) or over 10 years with Sprint to keep your new Gold Premier status. All those under would be moved to Silver, and less perks including no more yearly upgrades. A lot of people had the 69 dollar plan, which was eligible, but then they moved it up to 99, which made them on the silver plan. This had nothing to do with account in good standing.

nikkisharif says:

Gotcha...I forgot all about the them changing the pricing guidelines, since I was always at $99 I never really paid attention to that!!!!

dfine1966 says:

sorry, hit it once and 3 appeared

dfine1966 says:

delete

a lot of people were downgraded last year when they restructured the program. I would say the majority of customers who hadn't been with Sprint for over 10 years got downgraded since the other qualification was to be on their top tier plans.

this should come as no big surprise to you guys. kiss your unlimited data goodbye too. at least with verizon i get good service and strong lte.

cwilson617 says:

You know, you're probably right. Sprint offers unlimited because they have no real ability to move enough data to require a data cap. I live in Sprint country. Their 4g is better than 3g, but nothing to get all excited about. 3g is abysmal most of the time. Gonna stay because I was with att when they were Cingular. Never again. VZW is behind by a year with the bionic. No offense, but VZW hardware is a collective yawn. I used to think the phone was gonna be the end all, be all. They can do real crazy cool sruff, but in the end, it's still just a phone. My Evo3D will do what I need it to for a long time, premier or not. Unlimited or not. I'm gonna get a tablet in addition to this phone, and already own a bad ass laptop It's all really cool and all, but how much of this do we, or specifically, I, really need?

jas2743 says:

Yeah, as soon as my contract is up, i'm done with Sprint.

dquinn80 says:

I hear ya, with choices like that, there's nothing stopping us from jumping ship now. We still have unlimited, yes, but for how long?

dquinn80 says:

Say whaaaaaaat? (In my Stewie voice). Haven't we seen this before? I swear it rings a bell (no pun intended). This has "Apple is Coming" all over it!!!!

of course apple is behind this, we all knew this would happen the minute they carried Ios products.

dyne2199 says:

Just another reason to go pre-paid. As long as you're not bothered by running a phone with a little less horsepower and a few less features, it's definitely the way to go.

ummm you can get high end pre-paid phones now.

crxssi says:

It is a lot worse than fewer phone selections. The Prepaid Sprint stuff (under various names) DO NOT INCLUDE ROAMING capability. That means if you are not near a Sprint tower, you are totally screwed.

EvoJumper says:

Great job Sprint. A pre paid carrier sends like a way better option then ever before. your taking away your biggest advantages over your competitors. You just killed all the business you would have stolen away from Verizon and At&t. I was rooting for you, until you decided I was silver instead of gold. Now you take it away completely.

this will eventually be the demise of sprint.

Who? says:

This is like MetroPCS raising its rates to match Verizon and thinking it's going to make MetroPCS more profitable.

Just a gaggle of short-term stock-price-obsessed idiots.

ricbon says:

the ipoon cometh

folarino says:

I don't understand the rationale behind an Upgrade Fee. You are already going to be in a 2 year contract with them and then you have to pay a fee on top of that.
So if you upgrade your phone, you now have to pay for the phone and cough up an extra $72 ($36 upgrade fee and $36 activation fee)????
That's absurd.

Ultimately it doesn't affect me because I have been off contract for over a year now. I hate contracts and buy phones full price, so I won't get charged the fee, however for those that do, it's ridiculous.

I think it's the same fee or at least you only get charged once. Also, I'm pretty sure they charge you that fee even if you buy the phone off contract, off ebay, or given one since you'll still need to activate it on the network.

folarino says:

I see so upgrade fee = activation fee.
It's still stupid for them to start charging for online activations. I personally never activate in the store because it takes FOREVER.
Not pleased with this news at all.

But yes, this fee is absurd. It's also almost pure profit for them. What's really absurd is having to spend over an hour in the store to buy and activate the phone not including the initial wait time for the rep.

GivenToFly says:

That's crazy. That alone would make me not want sprint. That's why I love verizon. I change phones sometimes 3 or 4 times a year, and it doesn't cost me any more than the price of the phone to do it.

One would think that your upgrade fee would be the same as your activation fee, since you wouldn't be upgrading if you didn't plan on activating it. That's blatent gouging.

Bmwillz says:

Same here no contract and plenty of leverage

xemtra says:

clearly you have mastered the art of selling used and buying new or have tons of cash laying around for phones. most people must be subsidized and every 2 years is plenty of money out the door for most people.

Unibrow says:

I'm sure this is going to upset some people but honestly it was amazing Sprint let everyone upgrade on a yearly basis, besides they so far haven't exceeded the $199 mark with their new phones (not including the Epic). Even the off contract pricing seems rather fair comparatively

Keep the unlimited and very competitive pricing and they will have me forever. If this change allows them to expand their network then that's all for the better in my book.

cbpagent72 says:

My contract is over on both of my accounts and I might start looking elsewhere. the data is so slow here in Tucson like 100-150 kbps it is so insanely slow. I have just been suffering through because I knew I could get a yearly phone on my gold premier status. Who cares about data caps when your 3g is so damn slow.

chuckz28 says:

Wow I was leaving Verizon to get away from this BS and it looks like I'm getting right back into more BS. So much for better policies, I guess Sprint just wants to follow everyone else's lead of screwing the customer.

So if I use a Premier upgrade right now will I still have one more before the end of 2012??

no

folarino says:

If you are premier Gold, yes. At least that's how I understood the playbook.

That's how I read it at first too but I'm starting to second guess that assumption. Jerry's post says "current and final" and the playbook reads "Once they take advantage of their Premier annual upgrade, they will qualify for *subsequent* upgrades under the New for You Upgrade Program"

cheburashka says:

means that once you use this last upgrade the next one will be in 20 months from that time.

jlo8720 says:

guys as I would guess, there is a policy before this change takes place (where i would hope you can use your gold and then get another one before 2012) and a change after the policy is announced/takes effect where they screw you and dont allow you another 12month upgrade. knowing which one is right is the head scratcher

Floss82 says:

Damn and i thought T-Mobile was bad for pushing up our bill due dates to 4 days:-O but what i dont get is how can Sprint say these chnages are being made for customer experience or satisfaction but its all bad news and ending deals and promotions??? Smh Im about to say freak all these carriers and go back to a pager\beeper and keep it moving :p haha

Floss82 says:

And another thing its like ever since the recession , everyone is crying broke ESPECIALLY companies and businesses and all they care about is stealing our pockets and making us more poor than befoie and all we get left with is a good scheme, good game and bad quality and quantity:( this world sucks right now!!!!!

Bmwillz says:

Not really people are just lazy and bend over and take what ever is thrown at them

RUSH says:

I'm not going anywhere...It's even worst over at the competitors.

qhinton says:

Stayed too long. Sprints service is slow in Milwaukee any way. Back to US cell or VZ

Draiko#AC says:

These are similar changes to Verizon's January policy switchup they made before they got the iPhone.

1. ETF Raised? Check
2. Trial period reduced from 30 days to 14 days? Check
3. Early upgrade programs nixed? Check
4. Announce iPhone?

This isn't about staying competative, this is about the iPhone.

jlo8720 says:

I totally agree, but is there any physical tangible evidence that these changes are involved with the iphone moving to said new carrier? it has some steam right?

Click on the link to sign the online petition, might not be worth much but at least we can voice our opinion. Repost anywhere you can please.

http://www.change.org/petitions/keep-premier-program-for-loyal-sprint-cu...

raindog469 says:

Sprint: where loyalty no longer has its rewards. Should have seen this coming when I got that letter informing me they'd decided I was more a silver customer than a gold one.

But I have to admit this may actually be a net gain for me. I took the annual 5 dollars off, sure, but getting a new phone every 20 months instead of 24 will sure beat the crappy "perks" they kept sending me, like offers to get tickets to sporting events and concerts I couldn't possibly have cared less about.

Now if they'd just get a worthy successor to the Epic out there in time for my next upgrade.

How is 20 months less than a year and a half? Lol

yumyum says:

Meh, call me crazy but for some reason I'm not in an uproar about this.

-I don't upgrade yearly (but even if I did, I'm on a family plan with silver status so I don't get a yearly discount anyway).
-Instead, I will be able to eventually use my "2 year" upgrade 2 months earlier.
-I don't buy the overpriced accessories from Sprint (online retailers with cheaper prices ftw).
-I get to keep unlimited data
-I get to keep cheaper plans (with no extra fees like the smartphone fee)

If this is what Sprint had to do to stay in the market, then I'm all for it. It actually helped me personally. Sorry to all the ones that this affects negatively, but FOR ME, this turned out to be a good thing.

tronthedon says:

- I don't use the yearly upgrade (family plan line on silver status)
- I gain by being able to upgrade 2 months earlier than usual!
- I get to keep unlimited data
- No monthly price hike
- I don't buy the overpriced accessories (online retailers ftw)
- I don't use any of the useless perks like crappy concert discounts
- 14 days is enough time to evaluate a phone. The only ones that won't like this are the folks that cheat the system and return the phone just because a new phone has come out that they want to buy.

Again PERSONALLY, this actually helps me. It's not like this is a pure policy decision (as much as it appears to be), like locked bootloaders. It's more of a money decision. Like it or not, Sprint needs to increase profit margins after bleeding post-paid customers and they have done so in the least painful way for me. If you do the whole Facebook protest thing for this, they will look for other ways to save money and the changes will be worse. Save the outrage for when they try to make unlimited plans go the way of the dinosaur!

Justs says:

This.

Further, I'm quite certain we will be able to visit other sites/articles regarding ATT, Tmo, VZW, etc. in a few months and see all of the peeps who left Sprint leading more bitchfests.

"Save the outrage for when they try to make unlimited plans go the way of the dinosaur!"

Most intelligent point in any thread on this page.

Unibrow says:

Yeah, I myself am sitting here thinking about how I'm Premier Silver right now and I'll be able to upgrade 2 months earlier than I would have unless I bumped up my plan for a few months to make Gold. 20 months is just a couple months over a year and a half. So instead of being able to upgrade in October of 2012, I'll be able to upgrade in August of 2012. If i was Gold I'd be able to upgrade this December.

Seems like my next upgrade will be due right around when the next batch of uber phones on Sprint is released since they tend to release in the second half of the summer into the fall.

Myself am also not big on upgrading every year. The only time I upgraded and used my Gold was when I had my Pre. They actually let me upgrade at 11 months because the Evo was on sale at Radioshack this past December for $99 and the power button was broke on the Pre. I'm not sure why anyone wants to continually upgrade their phones left and right, it's expensive and I would think if you have money to throw around to have the latest and greatest you'd probably not care about buying the phone off contract and selling what you have on ebay. Hell, I would think this would make selling a slightly used phone on the bay easier, but who knows.

The Evo tends to struggle with some things but after having had it for 10 months now it's held up extremely well and I recon I can get another 12 months out of it no problem and she'll probably still feel like new.

frank828#AC says:

there's goes my incentive for staying with sprint.

it's been a good 10+ years. the yearly upgrades was really the ONLY real reason why i've stuck with sprint all this time.

mech1164 says:

So tell me again why I should stay with Sprint? First they scr3w me with pushing me out of gold to silver. Taking away a yearly upgrade for me. Then the EFT increase and now getting rid of premier altogether. I was rooting for them to get the Iphone and all the people jumping for the better deals here. Why? They have taken just about all those reasons away. Part is Iphone effect no doubt. Alot of it though is them being desperate for more ARU. And yes, next is the tiered pricing. At that point its what's out there that's better. As much as I hate the Death Star, I was looking at getting the Pre3 if it had hit ATT. Now It might just be for any decent phone they have. At least I can swap out sims if I like.

logikgr says:

Wait! Wait! Wait a moment here! This is going to drive many loyal customers away, by loyal I mean, customers that have renewed at least 2 times (3 years or more). The reasoning behind this is absurd!

First point, if a customer is a Premier customer and does not take advantage of yearly upgrades or "other perks", then it costs Sprint nothing (besides the annoying mailers) to retain that customer. My grudge with how Sprint handled the Premier program is in the criteria it used to allow/exclude customers to the program. In my opinion, it should've been by continuous time (5+ years) as customer or by total average monthly bill (instead of base plan cost).

This reasoning comes from personal experience. I've been with Sprint for almost 9-years, I have the 1500 family plan with four lines, but also have many add-on services, my average bill is between $300-$350, not including separate yearly equipment purchases from Sprint. When the new program took effect, I lost my yearly upgrade. Yet, a first or second year customer with just the "right" plan, retained their yearly upgrade? It doesn't make sense, and I think that it alienated many loyal customers that were in situations similar to mine; that is, high average monthly bills, but too low base plans and not enough years to be "gold".

Second point, what was that $10 data hike that was forced down our throats for? It went by the "4G tax" or as Sprint called it "Premium Data", supposedly because a subscriber with a 4G phone, on average, would use more data. It didn't matter if said subscriber was in a 4G area or not. Afterward, Sprint stated that this $10 raise in data fees was meant to keep unlimited data services. Since much noise was made about it, Sprint decided to apply it to everyone.

Now they're basically saying: "About that $10 fee increase, uh, yeah, what we said...never mind...we just wanted to raise our prices. Okay? Oh, and by the way, that Premier program you love, we'll take that back too. Yeaaaah, we're actually going to need you to go to another wireless carrier?"

I have done the math and I don't mind paying $30-40 more for better coverage and the opportunity to actually have 4G service in my area this year. Sprint is still 3G Rev. 0 in my area, ridiculous. I'm done with Sprint!

ajcook says:

Yes, Sprint bungled the initial introduction of the $10 "4g tax". They did clarify that it was not for 4G, but for ALL Smart Phones. If you think about the amount of data that Smart Phone users of any stripe (4G or not) use compared to the basic "feature phones", it is not an unreasonable differentiator. I suspect that eventually "feature phones" will go away completely, and not long after that, Sprint will simply roll the $10 into their base plan rates, no longer needing to keep it separate. Then, no one will notice the "tax", just a higher rate (which won't make anyone happy, either, but prices rise all over eventually).

EvoJumper says:

EVERYONE PLEASE. Blow up the boards in the Sprint forums. Complaining on Android Central is fine and all, but let Sprint hear it loud and clear on their own website. There are two threads going now with less than 40 responses. Let's be heard. Tweet this as well but really let them have it on their discussion boards.

Also email sprint: Dan@sprint.com

xemtra says:

ya, it will go straight to spam...

ajcook says:

Not everyone in incensed by this change. I'm a long term Sprint customer, and--while I'm disappointed--I'm not inclined to burn Sprint at the stake over this. And, that attitude is not because I'm merely a sheep. :-)

harold42483 says:

Sound like the iPhone effect to me. I swear I hope apple burns to the ground. You know what would be great if Google stepped in somehow.

milesmcever says:

Your dead on.

MrRedJoker93 says:

At least Verizon and AT&T let you know that they're going to screw you over...

Ummm, no they didn't. They rammed it up our asses just the same way sprint is doing.

Dark_Blu says:

Yea, and usually that happens without a leaked "Playbook" in AT&T's case.

milesmcever says:

Hello people does anyone not see who is really doing this? Think about it att did it first while they were the exclusive holder of which phone then Verizon did it next when they got the phone now sprint is doing it and which phone are they getting? Look for more changes and be happy that you will soon be able to get an iphone at sprint. All I have to say is I'm still mad they were the main ones behind Verizon killing 1 year upgrades because apple did not want that if you don't believe me ask some people on the inside of Verizon it wasn't a secret.

eric3316 says:

Wow, being a Sprint customer for over 10 years Sprint actually made you feel like they appreciated your long term commitment and the yearly upgrade made it all worth it. It was the reason I didn't look to switch to any other carrier. Now that I will get no perks for being a long term customer and treated the same as someone who just signed up to Sprint, I have no reason to be loyal to them if they no longer care about their long time customers...

I also love how they try to switch it around and try to make it seem like their moves are being done in our favor. Do they think we are that dumb! They should just be straight with us.

Dear Sprint customers, since we are getting the iPhone 5 we are going to start f'ng you like every other provider has done and these are our first steps in doing so. Stay tuned for our next steps which will f..k you even harder!

gmrpnk21#AC says:

What bs! I love the ability to upgrade every year, and it was one of the big reasons I kept Sprint! This is a slap in the face to customers that have been with them for 8-10 years! Way to go screwing this up sprint. You take away benefits and tell me it's a positive for me? Don't piss down my back and tell me it's raining!

ozzzy3z says:

Sprint management can never be accused of being smart. Back when Sprint was a big player in residential landline service I worked in one of their call centers. Some upper management genius thought it would be a good idea for U.S. based CSRs to proactively call Sprint customers in Puerto Rico to check in on how they liked their service and to make sure they were on the most cost effective calling plan. The problem? None of the CSRs spoke Spanish (none as in ZERO!). Sprint's solution? Give us a script, in Spanish, that we could read (attempt to read/pronounce) with no idea what we were saying or what the customer was saying back to us. It was a disaster.

We continued to call Puerto Rico for several days before Sprint figured out it was a bad idea and finally put a stop to it. Maybe someone needed to tell Sprint management what a bad idea it was in Spanish for them to figure it out?

All I can say about this change is: Esta es una idea realmente mala.

Unibrow says:

Not sure why everyone is getting all bent out of shape over this, regardless most of us only have one more opportunity to get another phone. Those of use that get to upgrade now at 20 months instead of 22 months will at least be able to get a brand new spankin phone to go out in style when the world ends in 2012!

=p

on a side note, if this is related to Apple (in regards to having to sign some kind of anti-competitive clause) I'm wondering what the legality of such a clause would be.

edgeblade says:

Greaaaattt and here I was thinking of switching to Sprint from Verizon, but there's no point now since they are ditching the premier program which offered yearly upgrades. Verizon axed their's and only is offering a $30 discount now for me and I've been with them for quite a while. The smartphones and the like and too damn expensive even with the discounts carriers offered, now they are axing the discounts which is just going to make them even more expensive. It's like they're telling customers, "no, we don't want you to buy high-end devices." Something needs to be done about this either on the manufacturer end or carrier end. With new devices coming out every 4-6 months or sometimes even faster, it's impossible to upgrade to the latest device without spending a fortune which I think is ridiculous. Any carriers out there that still offer legitimate discounts (i.e. $100 or so)?

wpavlik2 says:

Sprint is STILL cheaper than Verizon on a monthly basis.
Yeah, I'd 'like' to have an LTE phone, especially since it's on in my area, but I'm not going to spend $30 or more a month to have it.

xemtra says:

yep. i really would consider switching to another carrier. BUT verizon coverage is no better in my area and id pay 40+ more a month and get less minutes and less data... So many people assume sprint coverage is poor, but having used both extensively, Sprints coverage is nearly as good as verizon minus 4g.

edgeblade says:

So would it still be worthwhile to switch to Sprint even with the drop of Premier, et al.?

Gekko says:

IMO this is a net positive for most Sprint customers. 22 month upgrade to every 20 months is a good thing.

Gekko says:

i think Sprint still represents the best bargain of all the major carriers by far, no?

Mike_is_Mike says:

It's like someone stepped on the Sprint ant hill and all the little sprint ants (consumers) are scurrying about in a frenzy try to figure out what happened. :D

If Sprint followed all the great free business advice pontificated in these comments, in a year you would all have FREE phones……no service to go with them - because Sprint would be out of business, but what the heck, you can't have everything!

Cubfan says:

Once one starts screwing you, they all join in. Look at the airlines with their baggage and seat fees, banks charging you like $12 a month for them to store your money if you don't keep enough there. Some hold out for awhile, but eventually give in.

kona2day says:

Actually, not my airline. We don't charge for bags, unless you check 3 of them. Maybe Sprint should follow a certain airline's way of doing business, be different from the rest. Our airline took in more passengers and made more money doing that, then charging bag fees. If Sprint would just looked at what would keep customers they had and bring in new customers, they might just be number 1, instead of someone else.
I was trying to figure out this morning, in what way, would they be making more revenue, by getting rid of the Premier program. Those who are Gold, would get new phones every year, small profit, but it's still a profit, and they would also be signing a new contract. There is no loss that I can think of to get rid of it.
Upping the other charges, well, yes that will make more money for you, but everyone else charges the same thing, so what makes them any better. LTE is everywhere, pretty much, on Verizon. That is a big plus for them. Sprint is still working on getting 4G out there. I don't have it where I am.
Look, some will go to other carriers, some will stay. For some, this won't make a bit of difference to them, for others, a huge difference. So, it's all in who you are and what you need from you cell phone carrier.

enzo says:

Sprint needs to recoup the Apple surcharges. Plain and simple. They should just add $20/mnt to iFruit users' bills, and continue to reward their loyal customers.

gbm85 says:

I'm pretty sure Apple specifically prohibits that. Apple doesn't want their customers to know that they're being reamed, so they force the carriers to hide the costs by raising their rates all around and/or cutting perks and loyalty programs. Of course the typical Apple customer probably won't believe this and would call you a conspiracy nut for even suggesting it.

rcorry says:

I'm a bit peeved, I was planning to take advantage of the 1 year offer next month. Back in July, Sprint's system even confirmed by eligibility date as mid-October.....now it's next August. So do existing customers have any recourse in the shift in benefits? - I guess the change isn't governed by the contract, guess I'll start reading it.

Dark_Blu says:

Just so I'm clear on this, prior to this peek at the Sprint Playbook, my first upgrade after joining Sprint last December, was due to be on December 1, 2011 with a $150 discount as a Premiere Gold Customer. Now I don't get that upgrade. Now I don't get that upgrade until December 1, 2012 and from there on, it's no Premiere. Right?

tkoreaper says:

I'm sorry, but you guys are making a big deal over something that's not really worth complaining about. I've been a premiere customer for some time and I don't mind having my upgrade changed from 12 months to 20... it's only 8 months.

Sprint still has the cheapest plans and with all the changes that will be coming in the next year or so they'll only get better. I pay $60 a month for unlimited everything for my Epic... It would only be $50 if I didn't have a 4G phone... You CAN'T beat that.

Dark_Blu says:

What plan do you have? I have the "Simply Everything" plan which is $99 plus $10 for the EVO 4G. The only other "Everything" plan I know of is the $79.99 call any cell for free plus unlimited text, data and messaging.

tkoreaper says:

I have the "Simply Everything" plan as well. There's also 3 other phones on the plan, but mine is the only 4G phone. When the plan is divided by 4 after subtracting the $10 for my Epic my portion is only $60. We've had this account well over 12 years and it was a business account.

Who? says:

Oh, well if you don't care, then of course it's wrong for other people to care.

wpavlik2 says:

As long as they are a lower cost option than Verizon or AT&T, I'm sticking with Sprint.
I still wish they'd put up another tower in my neighborhood, but other than that, I'm all good with them. I'm saving a lot of money over what I'd be spending on any of the other guys, (Well, except CRICKET, but really, does any smart phone fan want to be on THAT network?)

757boy says:

...maybe they will use this extra revenue to put up more 4G TOWERS.Or,whatever it is they consider 4G.I live in the FORT BRAGG area and there is no 4G coverage...no 4G coverage around the largest military base in the U.S. Or,maybe there is a legit reason for that besides a lack of funding.

prodriguez32 says:

I dont know if this was mentioned before however...all of those that purchase the SGSII Epic 4G Touch tomorrow (9/16) and was hoping to have their 30 return policy still available should they cave and go to the dark side cough*iPhone*cough in Mid October ( I'm thinking around Oct 14th), all of those plans are now done. You buy the Epic 4G Touch, your stuck with it...possibly the best phone to come out this year. Just a thought. Does any one know if the yearly upgrade fee on Sprint would even be applicable to the unannounced iCrap?

evo4gMN says:

Sprint Keeps deleting my facebook comments off their wall!!

757boy says:

...for real?

evo4gMN says:

Yes, they took my first one off. I posted a second and it stuck. However, it was not even on their front page. it was like i was posted yet couldnt find it on there wall. it was somehow buried out of view from everyone. Try posting on there wall and complaining about this, You will see!

nickacs says:

HAHAHAHAHA
All I gotta say is all you Spring mofos laughing at Verizon about tiered plans and doing away with NE2, FU!
Paybacks are a biatch, aren't they? LMAO! Take that you puta's

dchawk81 says:

It's not actually payback.

xemtra says:

huh? i live in Atlanta GA and the coverage here is the same as Verizon. i will continue to enjoy cheaper rates with SPrint. pwnt

Dark_Blu says:

If Verizon's 4G LTE coverage is this spotty all over Atlanta, then I'm glad I didn't go to Verizon last December. I get WiMax at my desk at work but not at home and not in a bunch of random places all over town. WiMax is pretty useless here.

Seeing as YOU don't have a yearly upgrade either, we STILL have unlimited data, and I am fairly certain I pay LESS than you, I am not sure where the "payback" is. With Verizon for 10 years and will NEVER go back the "Dark Side."

Dark_Blu says:

"The Darkside" is Apple and if the next iPhone blows away Ice Cream Sandwitch, there may be some grape Koolaid in that there cup...

We don't tiered data yet, douche!

I do understand why long term customers are a little upset about losing their yearly upgrade. But if you think this is really going to hurt Sprint's business, you are most likely wrong. A HUGE portion of Sprint customers are on the $69 plan (or the family plan equivalent) which only qualified for Silver level which is an upgrade every 22 months. So for people like me this is BETTER.

SO? Where was the rage and mass exodus of customers when Sprint originally took people off the gold status and bumped them down to silver? Oh yeah, didn't happen. Most cell-phone customers are NOT represented by the thoughts of Android Central. Doubt they even noticed (I know 3 of my Sprint friends had no clue what I was talking about).

ajcook says:

It always sucks when you lose something you enjoyed. But, I guess I feel a little more philosophical about losing my Premier status then other posters.

What company doesn't constantly examine its costs, and make strategic decisions about where to invest its income?

Sprint's Premier program was a nice loyalty perk. I enjoyed it, and wish it would continue.

But, when I think about my relationship with Sprint, I think that what I value most is what for me is a very cost effective unlimited family plan, that (at least in my area) cannot be matched by the other carriers in terms of value. That is more important to me than the Premier status, as it affects my monthly bottom line more.

When Sprint first introduced the Premier program, they allowed a 1-year upgrade on all 5 of the lines on my family plan. The next year, they dropped that back to only my line.

So, only 1 of my 5 lines is affected materially by this latest change.

Someone else commented that this made Sprint look just like all the other carriers. From my perspective, that is not a valid observation. Sprint continues to be the only carrier in my area offering truly unlimited everything at a price point that is effective for my family of 5 lines. As I have watched the competitors drop unlimited data over the last several months, I've been concerned that Sprint WOULD be just like everyone else and start metering data.

Apparently, not so.

If my giving up a new phone annually (on only 1 line out of 5) allows Sprint to remain committed to offering well priced truly unlimited plans, then I for one have no problem with this recent change, disappointing though it is.

I have no illusions that this change guarantees that Sprint will keep their unlimited plans available and nicely priced. But, I can see the business sense in doing so, for now, as that IS a significant differentiator for them, in my view.

I will continue having no problem recommending Sprint to my friends, based on the excellent product/price value that Sprint offers in my area compared to the other carriers.

My 2-cents worth, respectfully submitted.

MUTINOUS says:

Yes, Sprint still is the best bang for your buck, I just hope it stays that way and they continue to make jumps forward with their network(LTE). and its was more like a nickle, thank you for the post.

757boy says:

"...DAMN!!!,DAMN!!!,DAMN!!!."- FLORiDA EVANS from the t.v. show GOODTIMES.

Dark_Blu says:

All I know is that if this forces me to Keep and use my EVO 4G until next December due to not being eligible for an upgrade until then, that will suck. I'll hang around until Sprint does away with unlimited. The point has been made that Sprint continues to be the only carrier offering true unlimited. If I can't upgrade till next December, I'll deal with that, but when I text Upgrade, it still says that I get an upgrade on 12/1/11 with $150 off and a 2yr contract.

kaym says:

@ Dark_Blu: Hi this is Melissa with the Sprint Loyalty Team. Our annoucement today doesn't change The date you are eligible for your next (now last) annual upgrade. If you'd like to get in touch with agents who can specifically answer your questions, please access: http://community.sprint.com/baw/message/335561
Thank you.

svargas05 says:

All I know is that Sprint's announcing something huge in October regarding 4G and I can't wait for that...

Not that I'm rich or anything, but if I really want a different phone other than the one I'm currently carrying, I'll just buy it outright.

We get all these perks that nobody else does, they reduce them and now all of the sudden "Sprint sucks"

Verizon and AT&T have NO PERKS.

Simple.

Dark_Blu says:

4G? If the next iPhone works on WiMax and Ice Cream Sandwich isn't anything more than slight interface tweaks.... I want my Discount on December 1st dammit!!!!! Wouldn't it be funny if Sprint ONLY allowed a discount this year JUST for the iPhone? Sorry, but I think "a few people" might bail on Android for that...

MUTINOUS says:

I am on a $69 plan and I get the yearly upgrades(devoted since 1995), So there. I blame Apple for this. It sucks that every time a provider gets the Iphone it has to make major changes(increases prices or eliminates perks). Really, I wish the Iphone would have stayed with AT&T. I was not going to buy a IPHONE 5 anyways.
I am very happy with my FREE, thank you Best Buy, Nexus s 4G, yes I got all the Gs but only use 3gs. TRUE STORY: I sat in a parking lot with bad 3G coverage, remoted into a laptop at home with teamviewer, turned on skype, and at the same time made a skype call to that same laptop with my Nexus. If I can do all that with a FREE Nexus s, why would I want a IPhoney 5??? Sprint is still going to be my provider but IF I NO LONGER SEE A DIFFIDENCE BETWEEN THE PROVIDERS THEN SPRINT WILL NO LONGER SEE ME AS A DEVOTED CUSTOMER.

kaym says:

This is Melissa with the Sprint Loyalty Team.

We have lots of details on this change, including how it will affect your upgrade status, in our community. You can access it at:
http://community.sprint.com/baw/message/335561
You can even get in touch with an online Care rep there to go over your account specifically if you still have questions after reviewing the material.

bllackkman says:

Melissa I am highly upset!!! That is all, lol

kaym says:

I understand. We value all of our customers and this was a difficult decision. . .

gbm85 says:

Hope you enjoy bankruptcy!

bllackkman says:

I would pay an extra $5 to stay on the premier!!! They should ask the customers

Dark_Blu says:

Ok. I get it. Those of us who have Premiere Gold have until December 31, 2012 to use our last one year upgrade and mine becomes available on 12/1/11 so I can use it then if I want. That's good enough for me. That means you still have it available. Not a big deal then. Carry on.

richdroidx says:

Sprint customers should have seen this coming 1st vzw. then Sprint. Y'all lucky they haven't changed plans yet. But that's gonna happen when they get lte. Look at the upside tho sprint has been getting better devices and still has unlimited data. You just gotta be extra picky knowing your upgrade wont be available for 20 months

Who? says:

I wish carriers would offer 1 year contracts again. I'd pay a $100 premium for them over a 2 year contract.

DWR_31 says:

Has anyone noticed Sprint is not messing with the unlimited data.

Who? says:

Of course. But no one expects that sentence to be true for much longer. And plenty of people have unlimited data on other carriers because they were grandfathered in.

Sorry to say, but unlimited data is not an enormous distinguishing feature.

daveray44 says:

Just had training for these changes. Yes, the upgrades are changing from 22 to 20 months, but only after the next upgrade. For the current NFYUP customers, it will stay at 22 months.

What really gets me is business customers only have to pay one Account Activation fee and then are exempt from any future activation or upgrade fees. Its us, the consumer, that is both taking it on the chin with these fees, or subsidizing business customers.

As a current CSR, it is bad enough getting the phone calls now because of the activation/upgrade fees. Now, the new rule is, even our supervisors have to have manager permission to adjust these fees. I was actually in a Sprint store the other day and almost became unglued when the agent told his customer to call care and we will be happy to waive the charges when the next bill came in.